Topics

12/07/2017

After Gaining Weight, We Eat Too Much and Do Less Exercise

Contents

Prologue
  1. People don’t gain weight because of eating too much
  2. Example of not enough exercise after getting fat

Prologue

 "The experts who say that we get fat because we overeat or we get fat as a  result of overeating - the vast majority  - are making the kind of mistake that would (or at least should) earn a failing grade in a high-school science class.
They're taking a law of nature that says absolutely nothing about why we get fat and a phenomenon that has to happen if we do get fat - overeating - and assuming these say all that needs to be said."


(Gary Taubes, Why We Get Fat, 2010, Page76)

This is the foundation I started writing my blog on. I’m sure that there are at least a few researchers in the world who think the same way as I do.

Even if someone insisted that, “the Earth is going around the Sun” in the sixteenth or seventeenth century where "geocentric theory" was the prevailing thought, no one would have believed him. 

Many should have argued that, “if the Earth is going around the sun, our heads should go around, too.” However, now, it’s common sense that the Earth is going around the sun.

In the same way, many might not believe me when I say, “people can gain weight by intestinal starvation and it is the fundamental cause of being overweight.” However, I believe it’s the truth.
  

1.People don’t gain weight because of eating too much

It is said that, “eating too much and not enough exercise are the causes of gaining weight,” but here is an interesting experiment that is related to it.
 

"In the early 1970s, a young researcher at the University of Massachusetts named George Wade set out to study the relationship between sex hormones, weight, and appetite by removing the ovaries from rats (females,obviously) and then monitoring their subsequent weight and behavior.

The effects of the surgery were suitably dramatic: the rats would begin to eat voraciously and quickly become obese.The rat eats too much, the excess calories find their way to the fat tissue, and the animal becomes obese. This would confirm our preconception that overeating is responsible for obesity in humans as well.

But Wade did a revealing second experiment, removing the ovaries from the rats and putting them on a strict postsurgical diet. The rats, postsurgery, were only allowed the same amount of food they would have eaten had they never had the surgery.

What happened is not what you'd probably think. The rats got just as fat, just as quickly. But these rats were now completely sedentary. They moved only when movement was required to get food.

The way Wade explained it to me, the animal doesn't get fat because it overeats, it overeats because it's getting fat. The cause and effect are reversed.
(*snip*)
The evidence that fat tissue is carefully regulated, not just a garbage can where we dump whatever calories we don't burn, is incontrovertible.
Those who get fat do so because of the way their fat happens to be regulated and that a conspicuous consequence of this regulation is to cause the eating behavior (gluttony) and the physical inactivity (sloth) that we so readily assume are the actual causes."

(Gary Taubes, Why We Get Fat, 2010, Pages 89-94)

<1970s>
Words of Bruce Birstrian who conducted a treatment of a low-calorie diet (600kcal/day) to thousands of obese patients at Harvard University of Medicine.

"Undereating isn't a treatment or cure for obesity; it's a way of temporarily reducing the most obvious symptom. And if undereating isn't a treatment or a cure , this certainly suggests that overeating is not a cause."

(Gary Taubes, Why We Get Fat, 2010, Page39 )

My experience is a little different from the rats’ story, but I want to tell of my experience that I gained weight not because of eating more.

When I was very thin, under forty kilograms, I couldn’t eat a lot since my stomach always felt heavy. Fatty foods and oily foods were the worst. I tried hard to gain weight, but I couldn’t.

One day, I realized that I could gain weight by eating only easy-to-digest foods (mainly carbs and a little meat) and experiencing being hungry for hours. So, I tried to eat light meals for breakfast and lunch, and I tried not to eat vegetables and fat very much until dinner. By doing so, I gradually gained weight. And when I weighed about fifty kilograms, I had more muscle and less discomfort in my stomach. I was able to eat more than before.

Those who didn’t know my experience told me, “You’re gaining weight because you’re eating more,” but that wasn’t true.
After my body adjusted to my new eating plan, I gained weight by eating and got more muscle and a greater appetite. As a result, I was able to eat more than before. So, the reality was the other way around.
 

▽Maybe it’s easier for you to imagine with an extreme example.
 Let's say there was a man three meters tall who weighed two-hundred-fifty kilograms. If he eats five times more than us, you won’t think, “he became big because he eats a lot” but rather, “he can eat a lot because he is big.”

"European medical researchers (just prior to the Second World War) argued, as I will, that it is absurd to think about obesity as caused by overeating, because anything that makes people grow—whether in height or in weight, in muscle or in fat-will make them overeat.
Children, for example, don't grow taller because they eat voraciously and consume more calories than they expend. They eat so much-overeat–because they're growing."

(Gary Taubes, Why We Get Fat, 2010, Page 9)

2.Example of not enough exercise after getting fat

"Some people find it hard to get their head round the fact that aerobic exercise is not particularly effective for weight loss, even when faced with all the facts.

One reason for this is our experience of seeing physically fit and active individuals who are clearly lean.
Look at any elite long-distance runner or Tour de France cyclist and you're probably getting a glimpse of what it's like to have a single-digit body fat percentage.
The automatic thought process is that exercise causes leanness.

However, could it that individuals who are naturally lean are simply more likely to end up as elite long-distance runners or cyclists? In other words, might their natural leanness cause certain people to be more active, rather than the other way round?

There's actually some evidence for this. In one piece of research, the relationship between physical activity and body fatness in children over a 3-year period was assessed. It was found that the more sedentary children were, the more fat they carried.

TV game

This is all to be expected, but because the study was conducted over a prolonged period the researchers were able to gauge whether sedentary behaviour preceded weight gain.

Actually, it did not. In reality, children accumulated fat first, and then became more sedentary.
The authors noted that this finding 'may explain why attempts to tackle childhood obesity by promoting PA [physical activity] have been largely unsuccessful'. "

(Dr. John Briffa, Escape The Diet Trap, 2010, Pages 223-224)

I agree with this opinion, but I’d like to add my own opinion. As Dr. John Briffa said, I think it’s reasonable to think those who are slim aim to be marathon athletes or soccer players. At least, they know that they won’t get fat, even though they eat a lot of calories. So, they eat whatever they want without hesitation.

In other words, by eating balanced foods every meal, intestinal starvation doesn’t happen —by that, I mean their base weight value as I defined it doesn’t change—and they keep their current weight while getting a little more muscle. It’s not that they don’t put on weight because they are burning extra calories they eat by exercising.

▽On the other hand, those who stay in tend to eat less when they are sedentary, such as playing video games or watching television.

Sometimes, they eat light meals such as hamburgers, hot-dogs, or noodles for lunch. Since they don’t exercise, they don’t pay attention to eating nutritious meals.

If their diet leans toward carbs and some meats and they are experiencing being hungry for hours, the intestinal starvation mechanism may occur and their base weight value will go up. They end up gaining more weight. 

To sum up, I’d like to say that not enough exercise or laziness won’t directly make people fat. How many calories you expend by exercising has nothing to do with being overweight.
Rather, physical activity will affect the amount of food you eat as well as food choices.